9.11.2012

lemon honey tea concentrate


I came across this recipe, and made it this weekend. Apparently it's a traditional Korean way to make lemon honey tea, and I think it's just about perfect, in kind of the same way as the delicious chai concentrate I also love, especially now that the weather's getting cooler.

There's nothing more comforting than lemon honey tea when throats get raw, and this ensures that you will always have a homemade version on hand, even if you don't always have fresh lemons in the kitchen. Sometimes a scratchy throat comes on quickly, and the last thing that you want to do is run out to the grocery store to get lemons.

I used a 500mL jar, washed and thinly sliced two lemons and added enough unpasteurized honey to cover them. I also added in a little bit of thinly sliced ginger. (I keep ginger in the freezer so it can be easily grated / sliced without the annoying strings getting in the way.) The honey preserves the lemons, sweetens the concentrate and provides all of the soothing and healing that honey is so good at. The lemons soften and mix with the honey to make a sweet concentrate that can be added to hot water for a comforting drink on a cool fall night.
I hope that you avoid sore throats altogether this fall, but if you're afflicted and have this at the ready, it just might help. It keeps in the fridge for months, and you can top up the honey and lemons as you see fit and keep a perpetual jar on hand. Or start a fresh one once it's used up.

Work is great and so, so busy. Lemons are a good distraction. Hope you're having a good week!

28 comments:

  1. I made this two weeks ago and have a cup almost every night before bed. My jar won't last long at this rate. It is soooooo good. I used Manuka honey so it has a bolder taste (which is what I was looking for).

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  2. So how much do you use in a cup of water.

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    1. Start with a tablespoon and see if that's enough for you; you can use more or less accordingly. Enjoy! :)

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  3. Lovely! I can't wait to get back from vacation to whip (slice and drizzle?) a batch! Honey and lemon are part of my go-to homeopathic cold remedies since I can no longer tolerate the over-the-counter cold meds. So much better. I like the idea of adding ginger!

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  4. Does it matter if the honey is unpasteurized?

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    1. You can absolutely make it with pasteurized honey; it just won't have all of the beneficial stuff in it that pasteurization gets rid of. If you can get unpasteurized from a source you trust, that may have more healing properties.

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  5. so how long do you think this would last? Perhaps two weeks... although honey is good for preserving, it's not a forever preserve... (can't wait to make some myself!)

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    1. I would think even longer than that, but I don't have concrete evidence to back that up. Honey on its own can last for ages; it's the mixing it with lemons and ginger that would make it more susceptible to spoilage, I think. This is to be kept in the refrigerator, though, which I think would extend the life significantly. I'll see what else I can find out about it, but hopefully you'll consume it all well before it spoils. :)

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  6. Does the honey get kind of hard or congealed more when it's kept in the fridge?

    Interesting question above re unpasteurized honey; up until yesterday, I didn't even know there was pasteurized honey. Silly me. :} Hubby said that honey shouldn't be pasteurized even.

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    1. Hi Teresa! Nope, not at all - I don't know if it's the juice from the lemons that keeps it liquidy, but it's not really hard. Maybe a bit thicker, but not as much as you might imagine. I think that lots of good stuff is probably lost when honey's pasteurized; most, if not all grocery store honey is pasteurized. We get some yummy local stuff that is wonderful. And unpasteurized! :)

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    2. Anonymous9/17/2013

      Yes, honey should not be pasteurised, as it turns mildy toxic if it is pasteurized!

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  7. Honey is the only food that never goes bad. Never. Of course, that's if it's not mixed with anything...

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    1. That's what I've heard, Margarent - the whole 'found in the Egyptian tombs' thing. After a quick search I couldn't find anything that backed that up, though. Not to say it's unfounded; I just don't know. And yes, my concern would be that it's mixed with other ingredients, which I suspect would compromise it.

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    2. Actually, honey should act as a preservative for the lemon and ginger in this recipe.

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  8. Oh, this sounds yummy! Have to try it now that autumn has really arrived here :)

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  9. When I was little and had a sore throat, my mom would make us "hot honey and lemon. I'll have to give this a try!

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  10. Anonymous9/26/2012

    I just made 4 jars. I also added some ginger, and I had a spare lime that I also added, and that gave it ome colour. In one jar I added some dried Chile. Just because I love a bit of heat. Hope it all turns out.

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    1. That sounds great! The chiles should help to clear a stuffy head / nose, too - that's a great addition! I'm really enjoying mine, even though I haven't had to fight off a cold yet - it's just delicious!

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  11. When i first saw this, i thought it would make great gifts for Christmas. I cut up some lemons and put it in jars with honey. I made sure all the lemons are covered in honey before i let them sit in my cupboard. Unfortunately, the honey kept rising up and after a while, the lemons that were not submerged in honey got moldy. Any suggestions on how i can keep the honey submerged? i still think it will make a grand gift for Christmas, i just have to figure out how to keep it mold free....

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    1. What a sweet gift idea! I would make it shortly before giving it as a gift, and most importantly, it needs to be refrigerated. I didn't have a problem with the lemon slices floating; maybe try slicing them thinner? I'm imagining that larger pieces of peel would want to float. Good luck!

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  12. Thank you for your response, yes, cutting them thinner helped!

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  13. Delish! We've been keeping a jar in the fridge since I read this post. Great hot, but also great as lemonade once the weather warms up!

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  14. I wrote my extension service - and a couple of other extension services - about using honey to preserve fruits & vegetables. No one at any place I wrote to was willing to give me any sort of ratio of honey-to-other-stuff that they considered safe for preserving longer than about two weeks. A few of them allowed as to how it 'might be safe', but no one was willing to commit to it and say it was a good idea. I also did a fairly thorough Google search for any sort of research into the area and came up with zip. Which is unfortunate, as I suspect there's some basic ratio that's probably quite workable.

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  15. I spent 12 years in South Korea. They sell this mixture by the bottle. Drink the tea and eat the lemon. Great stuff.

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  16. I'm in China (the Liaoning province next to North Korea) and this tea is very popular but they add so much rubbish into the tea I've had some that have tasted like shower gel! I just tried yours tonight for my bad throat (no Lemsips in China :() and it's brill! I added ginger for an extra kick :D

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    1. Terrific, Lorna! Hope your throat is better soon. :)

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  17. Anonymous8/21/2014

    Hi..I,ve tried this lemon honey tea at a korean bakery in my country, Indonesia. They,ve made the lemon slices even smaller and thinner that I can't hardly see. Do you know how they made it ?

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  18. I would try using a mandoline or food processor to slice them super thinly. Enjoy!

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